- Made fun of Obama for imagining the possibility of talking to Hugo Chavez and Fidel Castro, and legitimately despicable people like the President of Iran.
Obama’s Unprogressive People
December 17, 2008
The main way President’s use their authority is by choosing who to delegate it to. What do Obama’s early picks say about him?
Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State
- Thought Iraq War was a great idea. Still does in private.
- Opposes restrictions on US military aid to governments that engage in gross and systematic abuses of human rights. Supports unconditional military aid to evil, torture-loving government leaders like those of Egypt, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Pakistan, Equatorial Guinea, Azerbaijan, Cameroon, Kazakhstan, and Chad.
- In 2002, Senator Clinton voted in favor of an amendment by right-wing bigot Jesse Helms that prohibits the United States from cooperating in any way with the International Criminal Court, and its prosecution of individuals responsible for serious crimes against humanity, such as those responsible for the genocide in Darfur. In addition, this vindictive law also restricts U.S. foreign aid to countries that support the ICC.
- Refuses to support international treaty to ban land mines, which is supported by almost every other government on earth, since land mines kill and permamently disable thousands of civilians every year, mostly women and children.
- Joined with Republicans to defeat a proposal that would restrict US export of cluster bombs to countries that use them against civilians. Up to 98% of casulaties from cluster bombs are believed to be civilians, with 30% of the bombs failing to explode on impact and turning into land mines.
- Drafted resolutions condemning the World Court’s for criticizng Israel’s construction of a “security wall” inside the terrority of another country and major human right’s groups condemnation of Israeli targetting of cilivians inside Palestine and Lebanon. (Because it’s not enough for us just to finance these crimes, we also have to immediately officially condemn any ethical organization that brings them to light.
Robert Gates, Secretary of “Defense”
- First ever military chief to be carried over from a president of a different party.
- Like Obama, doesn’t think it’s a big deal that the US spends more on the military than EVERY OTHER NATION ON EARTH COMBINED (especially when military spending funnelled through the Depts. of State, Homeland Security, and Energy is figured in, along with debt on past military spending) and in fact wants to increase the size of the military, even though our military is actually making things more dangerous for people here and everywhere.
- Was first rejected by Senate as CIA head for his near continuos “politicizing” (aka lying) about intelligence on nearly every “national security” issue. Was close advisor to CIA head Bill Casey (writing all his speeches and testimony among other things) who , like Bob Gates, thought it would be a great idea to sell missiles to Iran and crack cocaine to poor Americans in order to finance a terrorist war on the impoverished civlians of Nicaragua, one that, as the World Court, Catholic Church and others observed, focused on torture, rape, kidnapping, and murder of civilians as it’s primary mode of operation.
Lawrence Summers, Director of White House National Economic Council
- Oversaw the deadly imposition of “Structural Adjustment” throughout the globe, destroying a majority of the economy of the former USSR, catalyzing crises in Asia and Latin America, and reducing the quality of life for hundreds of millions of poor people through requiring cuts to social safety nets, privatizing of public industries, and the free reign of financial speculation across the globe.
- Even people at Harvard thought he was too elitist.
Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Fatherland Homeland Defense
- Leading advocate of using the military to round up immigrants along the Mexican border, supportive of chain gang prisons for undocumented immigrants and people awaiting trial.
Rahm Emanuel, White House Chief of Staff
- Enlisted in the military. Not the US one. The Israeli one. Making him the only US congressperson to have ever done so.
- One of the most pro-war Democrats who worked to convince others in his party to support Bush.
- To quote his dad: “Obviously he will influence the president to be pro-Israel. Why wouldn’t he be? What is he, an Arab? He’s not going to clean the floors of the White House.”
Eric Holder, US Attorney General
- Serves as a lawyer for Chiquita bananas, defending their funding of right-wing death squads in Colombia that targeted union and peasant leaders.
Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education
- As head of Chicago Public School District suspended and expelled tens of thousands of students through “zero tolerance” programs considered perhaps the strictest in the nation. No data supports the claim that such tactics increased safety in schools.
- Authored a plan called Renaissance 2010 that sought to pit inner city schools against eachother in “free competition” to access to funding.
Richard Holbroke, Special Envoy to Southeast Asia
- Oversaw US arming and coordination of the invasion of East Timor by “our” proxy, the Indonesian military, an unprovoked attack that lead to the deaths of 200,000 East Timorese, one-third of their entire population.
Ray Lahood, Secretary of Transporation
- Is Republican. (Remember those guys the majority of Americans requested not be in power in the executive branch anymore?)
- Has a rating of only 27% from the League of Conservation Voters. (Hint: That’s bad!)
- Unlike all academic experts on energy policy, thinks increasing domestic oil drilling could be a significant “solution” to energy and transportation problems.
Greg Craig, White House Counsel
- Lawyer for Bolivian ex-President Sanchez de Lozada who is charged with extreme corruption and genocide for, among other things, ordering the murder of 60 civilian protestors in 2003. Craig says “we do not accept your characaterization of those events as a massacre.” His other lawyer, Howard Gutman, was an early member of Obama’s Financial Committee.
Dennis Blair, Director of National Intelligence
- As head of US military forces in the Pacific during the 90′s, backed Indonesia’s brutal war against the East Timorese and consistently led the campaign to reinstate and increase military aid to the brutal Indonesian military.
Sonal Shah, Transition Team Advisor
- US Coordinator for Vishwa Hindu Parishad, militant group that was held responsible for the genocidal pogroms against Muslims in the western Indian state of Gujarat in 2002 that killed 2,000 people and rendered 100,000 homeless. The Indian coordinator of the genocide, Narendra Modi, stays at the Shah family home when he visits the US.
- In 2005, Salazar voted against increasing fuel-efficiency standards (CAFE) for cars and trucks. In the same year, Salazar voted against an amendment to repeal tax breaks for ExxonMobil and other major oil companies.
More important even than who Obama’s appointing is who he ISN’T APPOINTING:
- Opponents of war, military waste, or the kind of destructive corporate economics that led to our current crisis.
- Proponents of universal healthcare, serious humanitarian aid, or radical changes to the way we use natural resources.
Al Gore, the last elected president from his party, Al Gore, believes Obama should announce a national goal of getting 100 percent of electricity generated by renewable sources within 10 years. Guess what? He’s not going to have any kind of authority in Obama’s administration.
Your tax money at work. Death squads and nuclear weapons, military and energy waste, financial chaos, lack of social safety nets… Do we want more of the same, or real change that brings progress for all people?